Tuesday, 19 July 2016

What Being Happy Means to Me...

I have been pondering lately what it means to be happy...to be truly happy...

What does the word happiness mean to me?  
Is it simply a word, an expression...or is it a feeling?  
 Or is it something else altogether?

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Perhaps a cup of hot coffee on a chilly morning...  Kissing chubby baby cheeks....
Watching hens peck contentedly in the dirt in search of a nutritious worm...watching the children play in the garden getting as brown and muddy as they possibly can....an exquisite sunrise...ah, the simple pleasures in life are gloriously rich indeed!

^ View of the farmland beyond our house taken from a bedroom window on a misty morning...

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I think too often we are in search of an elusive idea of what we think happeniness is...
If only we could have this or that or if only we could go here or there...
We are continually looking for the next exciting occasion, person or thing to make us feel happy...

But...I believe that happiness is found right here...  
It is discovered when our hearts are thankful for each gift from our heavenly Father, 
when we choose to praise Him in the midst of our busy, sometimes chaotic and painful lives and when we strive to be content in our circumstances.

A child's toothy smile...the first blossom on the peach tree...a bowl of freshly picked homegrown peas...a jar of homemade strawberry jam...a handwritten letter...a steaming pail of fresh milk...delightful gifts discovered when we purpose to embrace the here and now...

^ Brocolli harvested from the garden...

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Yes...I believe that happiness is found in the simplest things.  But I also believe in joy...

Joy comes from the King of Kings...our Saviour, Jesus Christ and is given to us when we purpose to delight ourselves in Him and seek first His Kingdom... 
Joy is not always something which we feel, rather it is a choice to be glad and thankful in whatsoever state we are in, just as Paul wrote.

Joy is discovered in Christ Jesus...oh, the blessed freedom that comes from following Him! 
Joy is sometimes painful and uncomfortable...often it means going without, but our Lord is a God who takes pleasure in giving us good and perfect gifts...  And He is faithful, so very faithful...

^ A cheerful pot of pansies never ceases to bring a smile...

Joy comes from laying down our lives for God...when we seek to please Him rather than follow our fleshly desires.
Joy wells up deep within our hearts when we seek to obey His commands, share His love with others and pour out ourselves for the sake of the Gospel.

I do not believe in simply being happy...  I believe in being joyful as we go about our work for the one true King.  

May I encourage you, dear reader, to make a conscious decision today {and everyday} to choose joy...

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"Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer."  ~ Romans 12:12

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With love and joy in Christ,
Kelly-Anne

9 comments:

Elizabeth said...

This post was simply perfect, Kelly-Anne! Perfect in its message, in its timing ♥ You are so right...happiness is good, but joy is great! Thank you for this beautiful and truth-filled message, my friend!

I loved the photos as well~ such beautiful country life! Ah! How those just speak of peace, beauty and simplicity....and joy! {[smiles}}

Thank you again for this post....you have no idea how much it encouraged me today! Much love and joy to you!

magnoliasntea said...

Beautiful new blog, Kelly-Anne! I believe the only true joy is from the Lord and obeying His Word. Have a lovely day!

Debby Ray said...

Ah...your words are so true, my friend. I, too, find much happiness and joy from the simplest things, many of the same ones that you listed. My heart breaks for those who don't know where to find their joy or happiness...what a depressing way to live...always searching for it. Beautiful post, Kelly-Anne :)

Debbie Harris said...

Beautifully written, Kelly-Anne, and so very very true.
Often I will share with others that our joy does not come in things, people, places or even our circumstances, but in Christ, and Christ alone. We can have joy no matter what life holds for us if we look to the Joy Giver, and except all things as being good and good for us because Christ loves and cares for us and has only our best in mind.
We have so much in our lives to be thankful for, things that we many times over look.
You know, this morning I was pondering on the many things that I am afforded with, such as toilet tissue. I know that may sound strange, but what a blessing to be able to stock my cupboards with those every day necessities that are often just the norm and forget to thank the Lord for His good provisions.

Thank you for the beautiful reminder here in your lovely post.

Joy! Debbie

Camille said...

Truly beautiful, Kelly-Anne. Thank you for sharing your heart and for encouraging our hearts in the process. You are so right...true happiness and joy is found in serving the Lord. He is the Reason for everything. Big Hugs to you! Love, Camille

Tane Hannah said...

Kelly, dear!
This post is wonderful. And so encouraging. You are absolutely right, happiness is found in the little things and joy comes from knowing our Lord and serving Him.

-T.
x

Cecilia said...

Your photography is beautiful and your words are a joy to me! How did you learn so much wisdom in your young years? Thank you for sharing these lovely and encouraging words. I hope I too, have learned joy in all things. I know as l learn to walk more closely with Christ, the joy is easier to find. Have a wonderful and blessed day, my sweet friend.
Hugs and blessings in Him,
Cecilia

Jazzmin said...

Dear Kelly-Anne,
What a precious post- your thoughts inspired and bless me so very much, my dear friend. And how beautiful your photos and wise your words are that you have shared. What truth this is and has me thinking about this in respect to my relationship with our Savior... indeed, true happiness is found in the beloved relationship with and our identity in Christ and living a life pleasing to our Lord. And it is in the simple things that bring joy and a smile to our hearts. It is so important to remember this, and to be reminded that material things or that big vacation or exciting thing we're looking forward to that is a big thing to us is not what is going to bring happiness, only temporarily. Thank you for reminding me of this and of what lasting happiness results from. So thankful for these reminders.

I enjoyed so very much the joy of visiting you this evening, dearest friend. Love and many hugs and blessings to you! May your day be full of blessings♥
Jazzmin

Olivia Bell said...

I truly enjoyed this post, Kelly-Anne! Your posts are always encouraging and offer wonderful spiritual encouragement! I need to do what you were talking about.. be happy with where I am in life with Jesus as the main Person in my life! Thank you for this article, dear friend!